Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Some rambling thoughts about course setting


I've been thinking about course setting a lot the last few days. Initially, I thought it'd be nice to measure the quality of a course.

Eric W. wrote about the quality of course setting:

...I think there is far to much emphasis on nailing winning times at all events, including WOC. I think this subject generates much more heat than light. Winning times happen to be a convenient, easy to measure, objective criteria, but it tells almost nothing about the quality of course design. I put acute angle doglegs in the same category, as easy to observe and measure, but not as important as other issues.

Course quality is of course quite subjective, and difficult to quantify, but ultimately more important. It also takes a little more insight to comment on....

Reading that quote got me thinking that instead of starting with course quality, I should start with descriptions. Some aspects of course setting are easy to describe - like winning time, number of controls, climb, and so on. Others take a little more work - like the fingerprint and the conditions of each control circle (see what I wrote about that for last Saturday's course).

The best approach might be to have a set of questions, similar to the questions I use to describe how orienteers train (see Kim Fagerudd's training for an example).

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 8:57 PM


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